Don’t lower your guard, police told amid extended ECQ
CALOOCAN CITY, April 11 (PIA) — The Joint Task Force Corona Virus Shield (JTF CoViD Shield) chief on Friday reminded law enforcers manning the quarantine control points not to lower their guard against persons who are not authorized to go out and travel following reports that home quarantine rules are not strictly enforced in some areas which are manned and supervised by local police forces and located mostly near the boundaries of towns and cities.
“I have also noticed during our inspections with the Director of the Highway Patrol Group (Police Brig. Gen. Eliseo Cruz) that some of our QCPs are becoming lenient in checking non-cargo vehicles for the UPOR (Unauthorized Persons Outside Residence),” said PLt.Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, JTF CoViD Shield commander.
“There are some UPOR who are openly staying out of their residence because they are not being cautioned, particularly those in non-cargo vehicles. Bantayan natin para hindi mamihasa,” Eleazar instructed the local commanders supervising the QCPs.
Eleazar and Cruz earlier conducted inspections on the newly-established Dedicated Control Points (DCPs) on the boundaries of Metro Manila with Bulacan, Rizal and Laguna.
Eleazar has reprimanded some of the violators trying to pass by the QCPs especially after finding out that they were not allowed to go out and their reasons for travel were not urgent and not justifiable. He also reminded the police commanders to be strict against those who disregard the ECQ rules that what is at stake is the public health.
The guideline of the JTF CoViD Shield and instruction of PNP Chief Archie Gamboa was that the QCPs are in charge for the inspection of all non-cargo vehicles, private vehicles travelling and crossing town or provincial borders. While all cargo vehicles will only be inspected at DCPs which are manned and supervised by HPG personnel
He explained that the establishment of the DCPs actually lessen the workload of law enforcers manning the QCPs.
“Those manning the QCPs have now more time to strictly enforce the IATF Guidelines on APOR (Authorized Persons Outside Residence) because they will no longer inspect cargo vehicles,” he said.
Based on the latest JTF CoViD Shield data, there were 115 DCPs set up across the country. On the other hand, there were 3,593 QCPs established in various parts of the country.
He further explained that in situations that QCPs and DCPs are located in one place, the two control points may co-exist in close proximity depending on the coordination between the HPG and the local police.
“But regardless of the location, this rule applies: DCPs shall inspect cargo vehicles and not the non-cargo vehicles; QCPs shall inspect non-cargo vehicles, not the cargo vehicles,” he added.
At the same time, Eleazar lauded the local police forces across the country for continuously conducting aggressive operations against violators of the home quarantine rules.
He said the decision to extend the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) up to April 30,2020, as recommended by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) and approved by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, is a proof that the threat of the Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) is still serious and therefore, the need to continue the strict implementation of the home quarantine.
Based on the JTF CoViD Shield data from March 17 to April 7, a total of 93,242 violators were accosted across the country but 70.8 percent of them, or 66,063 people, were just warned not to repeat the offense.
More than half of those accosted were from Luzon with 53,049 violators. The ECQ is currently being implemented in Luzon until April 30. A total of 17,380 violators were from the Visayas while 22,813 in Mindanao.
A total of 4,392 were fined; 4,523 were charged while 18,264 are set to be slapped with appropriate charges. (PIA NCR)